Barnard Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa 09 Feb 2016 - 15 Mar 2016
Siwa Mgoboza, Les Êtres D' Africardia IV, 2015, Courtesy: Artist
Future / Present: a state of conjecture, imagining, and uncertainty. A mash-up, a face off, a mutual evaluation, a conversation. It suggests the ongoing, inevitable and inescapable process of change, maturation, and entropy; but also the possibilities for birth, rebirth and renovation. It indicates not only the relative unknowability of the shape of the future but also the constant shifting of the outlines of the present, of what it means to be now. It is a state of positioning, taking stock. Simultaneously evaluating the “here and now” while speculating on the “there and then” – and considering in what ways those evaluations and investigations respond to and answer each other.
Participating artists include Siwa Mgoboza, Gitte Möller, Ryan Hewett, Alexia Vogel, Sue Greef, Sarah Biggs, Katherine Spindler, MJ Lourens, Virginia MacKenny, Lien Botha and Jaco van Schalkwyk, amongst others.
The convergences and divergences of Future / Present occur both in our internal worlds of imaginings and reflections as well as the external world of increasingly unstable identities and economies. A space is created within these convergences wherein the clear delineation of time, causality and order is dissolved. It is a space both Arcadian and apocalyptic, both here and yonder, vividly imagined and viscerally real. It thus becomes an amoebic, opaque space into which we can inquire, through which we can experiment with alternate realities, fantastic locales and hidden depths. It is a space which allows for serious contemplation, playful experimentation, bold confrontation or quiet introspection. It is a fertile ground upon which new artistic practices may emerge and older ones may mature, evolve, or shift entirely. What can these practices tell us about the world we live in now, and what might they foreshadow of times to come?
Future / Present is a fitting concept with which to usher in the New Year. It asks how art might engage with, challenge and respond to the present moment as well as the seeming acceleration of time into the future. It investigates how young and established artists alike grapple with beginnings, endings, and continuations and celebrates the possibilities the diversity of their approaches opens up.